Clients and partners have asked about our Amazon EU Christmas sales results, and how we fared selling on the five localised marketplaces over the 2019 peak. While we can't share exact numbers, there are clear trends that are worthy of further explanation.
It's Pattern's first year of selling on Amazon within Europe over the peak trading period, and with nine brands live across a variety of categories, November and December were a busy couple of months.
Below we highlight five trends that we saw acting as the authorised Amazon seller for those brands at the most competitive and promotions-heavy time of the year.
Our biggest revenue week was December 15th to December 21, as shoppers made last-minute gift purchases. As all of our products are fulfilled by Amazon and Prime eligible, we were able to satisfy demand late into the peak trading season.
Our best performing brand had its biggest sales that week on Sunday December 15th, but our second best performing brand was later on Wednesday December 18th. The brand that peaked on the 18th has products that work particularly well as presents, and so we feel we definitely benefited from last-minute gift buyers.
Hitwise says that Amazon UK's sales peaked on Black Friday, however, our sales on Amazon continued to ramp throughout December up until the week prior to Christmas.
Our Amazon EU Christmas sales pattern followed the overall Amazon trend; Black Friday saw higher sales than Cyber Monday, and overall the week that Black Friday fell in was stronger than the following week containing Cyber Monday.
We had seen sales ramping up week-on-week in the run up to Black Friday, with the exception of the week immediately prior to Black Friday. This is no surprise, as many competitors both on and off Amazon began Black Friday promotions very early, and shoppers were also holding off making purchases until Amazon's offical Black Friday promotions were revealed.
In fact, in the week prior to Black Friday week, some of our brands saw increased traffic despite the sales dip, further emphasising that shoppers were researching products but waiting to purchase to see if Black Friday promotions would launch.
We did not discount our prices for Black Friday, and were prepared to win the Buy Box less in order to stick to our long-term strategy of being a full-price Amazon seller.
In actual fact, we found that our Buy Box visibility stayed consistent over the Black Friday period, partly because of factors beyond price that go towards winning the Buy Box such as being Prime-eligible and product availability etc.
Since the week that Christmas Day fell in, our sales revenue has fallen back to the level that we were experiencing in October.
Given that we have not undertaken any post-Christmas clearance or other promotional activity, this dip in demand was expected. We expect revenues to begin to rise from the end of January onwards.
Monthly pay cycles drive sales spikes on Amazon EU In the later part of 2019 - once we were selling a variety of products on Amazon's EU sites - we began to notice the montly variation in sales that is common on many ecommerce sites.
Unlike in the USA, where many employees are paid weekly or biweekly, the majority of salaries are paid monthly in Europe. This can have a distorting effect on sales, as consumers delay purchases in the third week of the month until they have been paid the following week.
This trend was obviously disturbed by peak trading during December, but we will be watching to see whether it reoccurs in the final two weeks of January.
If you need support with developing or refining your Amazon strategy - or are interested in Pattern becoming the authorised Amazon seller for your products - then please contact us here.
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Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces.
Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.
So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.
Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products.
An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.
An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.
Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.
At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services.
It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.
It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.
The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.
Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces.
With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.
Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.